Wintry days are here to stay (for those of us not lucky enough to be in tropics), and for those souls who claim to enjoy said brisk season, now is the time to bundle, bundle bundle – whip out the fuzz, the wool, the coats, scarves and hot cocoa, and commence with the crackling fireplaces, good company, coziness, and general snugglery. Here are some fun and snuggly words from around the world to get you through these frosty days and through to springtime!
- HYGGE (Danish) Hard to explain and even harder to pronounce, the Danish word “hygge” (pronounced “hooga”) has exploded in popularity around the world. It translates roughly to “cosiness,” but it means so much more than that. Hygge is more than a cosy room full of candles, company and good food. Hygge is a philosophy; a way of life that has helped Danes understand the importance of simplicity, time to unwind and slowing down the pace of life.
- KUSCHELN (German) To cuddle, to snuggle. Elicits images of cute fuzzy puppies napping in a basket.
- MYSA (Swedish) Nearly the equivalent to our English “snuggle,” but if you’re gonna be mysering in Swedish, you can do it with someone, alone, or even in a café – perhaps “to cosy up” fits the bill.
- GEMÜTLICH (German) Descriptive of an agreeably pleasant atmosphere; cozy, comfortable, lovely.
- SHEMOMEDJAMO (Georgian) The feeling of extreme fullness, but, because your meal’s so delicious, you can’t stop devouring it. If Thanksgiving were one word, it would be shemomedjamo.
- SOBREMESA (Spanish) While sobremesa literally means “over the table,” the more meaningful translation is a bit longer-winded. It’s that time spent after a meal, hanging out with family or friends, chatting and enjoying each other’s company. It can be applied to either lunch or dinner, and often includes family members, but also friends — and it can even include a business lunch. Descriptive of a cultural tradition not really practiced in the U.S., Sobremesa describes the importance of the act of eating and getting together for a meal itself, rather than just the type of food being consumed.
- ABBIOCCO (Italian) That sleepy feeling you get after a big meal. Everyone has succumbed to drowsiness after a meal at one time or another, but only the Italians have enshrined the phenomenon in a single word. When you wish you could take a nap after lunch, you’re “having the abbiocco.”
- GEZELLIGHEID (Dutch) Comfort and coziness of being at home, with friends and loved ones, or general togetherness.
- GIGIL (Tagalog) The desire to pinch or squeeze something (or someone) that is overwhelmingly cute.
- CWTCH (Welsh) A hug. A safe haven given to you by the one you love.
Go forth and snuggle, friends – and stay warm through these last few nippy months – just keep in mind, spring is around the corner, and in the meantime, enjoy the coziness that only the cold can sometimes bring!!